Published by Month 9 Goodreads
Twelve-year-old Bertie Blount is great at causing trouble. When she’s forced to leave behind her dad and friends in North Carolina so her mom can marry the most boring optometrist in the world, Bertie has a chance at a fresh start.
But when Bertie arrives in Pennsylvania, she doesn’t just bring trouble; she brings disaster. In a moment of anger, Bertie unwittingly triggers an accident that puts her future stepbrother in a coma.
Broken and desperate to make things right, Bertie prays for a miracle. Instead, the universe gives her a pair of supernatural sunglasses, a wise-cracking doppelganger, and a terrifying ghost that sends Bertie on a dangerous mission to find the one thing that just might save her stepbrother’s life.
I had to delete a number of excellent scenes of Bertie in her home town in North Carolina.
I cut scenes of Bertie with her family and friends.
Bertie watching fireworks with her dad.
Bertie finding her stray dog Leon. Or Leon finding a stray Bertie rather.
All of these scenes were either in the first chapter or part of Bertie’s backstory.
Ultimately, I decided they all had to go in order to get Bertie’s plot jumpstarted from page one — which is excellent advice for any storyteller. Get in late, get out early. Cut off the heads and tails of each and every scene and only give your readers the juicy stuff.
A great screenwriter/film director from last century named Billy Wilder said every storyteller must follow three rules. “Do not bore. Do not bore. Do not bore!”
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ocelot Emerson is the freakish result of a mad scientist’s experiment gone horribly wrong. Born half magnificent cat, half malicious human, Ocie escaped from the secret International Prison For Wayward Creatures, and into a deep dark woods, only to be captured by a pack of ravenous ghost wolves. In a stroke of good fortune, the Great Spirit Wolves set aside their natural disdain for all things feline and accepted the cat person into their pack, where they taught Ocie how to hunt and tell bizarre yet heartwarming tales. Bertie’s Book of Spooky Wonders is Ocelot’s first novel aimed at feral and phenomenally gifted children. That means you, kid!
- One (1) winner will win a Starbucks gift card